Mountain High & Heaven Sent
Being Southern California born and bred, the idea of embracing the arctic (to me, anyways) East Coast winter has been highly challenging. Alas, after nearly seven years of living in the greatest city in the world, I have surrendered to Mother Nature’s icy grip. Visiting Aspen with a veritable babe brigade has aided in that effort. Having just come back from my latest visit, I am freshly reminded of all the reasons I love this small, once-humble former mining town, now a destination glittering with icicles and the fur-draped fabulous. The interesting thing about Aspen is that it’s at once very casual and relaxed and extremely indulgent and luxurious. The town and its menagerie of guests and locals is always surprising me and that’s one of my favorite things about the place!
Where to Stay
Depending on the time of year, there are advantages to staying in a hotel versus a rental house. In the spring, i prefer to stay somewhere homey where I can make my own coffee in the morning but for ski season, hotels are your best bet. I prefer the St. Regis for its warm, rustic interiors and very accommodating staff, as well as their dog-friendly bar and award winning spa. There’s nothing like a hot stone massage with cbd oil after a long day hitting the slopes and the Remede spa delivers every time. Plus, they have an oxygen bar available to guests after their treatments so you can boost your recovery and hit the mountain even stronger the next day. Win, win!
Where to Eat
There’s something about being in a mountain town that brings out the meat-eater in me. I fancy myself a conscious carnivore so I allow indulgence that primal urge arises. Some of the best chili I’ve had has been in a lodge, so don’t sleep on Elk Lodge at the top of Snowmass. For a fabulous meal off the mountain, I love Element 47 has never disappointed me with their wagyu and has quite an impressive wine list and a sommelier who introduced us to a bottle that became a quick favorite of ours- the Cedric Bouchard Roses de Jeanne champagne. For somewhere a little more casual but still full of ambiance and energy, you can’t beat Clark’s Oyster Bar. Generally if I see a lobster roll on the menu anywhere, I feel compelled to order it and Clark’s was no exception. Pro tip- ask them to skip the mayo dressing that they toss the lobster in. It’s messy to eat and overpowers the delicate lobster meat. Even the server who delivered it said it looked better without it and reader, it absolutely tasted so much better without it too!
Where to Play
Aspen seems to be an early to bed, early to rise kind of town- most people are very much there for the winter sports so much of the town shuts down after 10 PM most nights. Unless, of course, you make your own fun, which we are very wont to do! Have you ever been in a hot tub while it snows on and around you? It’s one of the coziest feelings I have ever experienced, amplified by the hot toddy I was sipping. One of these trips, I will be brave enough to try night snowboarding! Until then, there’s always the pool tables and jukebox at the Silver City Mountain Lodge where you can carouse with the locals until the wee hours.
Whether visiting Aspen in the winter or spring, the town’s charm and easy going nature makes it one of my favorite spots to prance, dance and make so many great memories!
That day when the end of summer intersects perfectly with the start of fall...
Apparently, September 23rd marks the official end of summer. In the mornings, now, there’s a breeze in the air that has a distinctly crisp fall-ish feel to it. Perhaps it’s all my time spent in school/academia, but this time of year always feels like a beginning to me. New cashmere coat, knee high boots, stacks of reading material and a renewed sense of purpose and plans and dreams. As I bid summer goodbye, I wanted to reflect on another wonderful silly season, one I’ve spent zipping about so fast my feet have barely had time to touch the ground. Vacations in far-flung places- ranging from Tennessee to Bermuda- and my home away from home in the gorgeous Hamptons. It’s truly been a hot one!
But I’m a little sad to see it go. There are so many things I love about those sunny months between May and September. School’s out, sunglasses are on and in the city, the air seems to fizz like a freshly-poured Aperol Spritz. I love the farmers markets filled with flat peaches, bursts of buttery-yellow sunflowers, Bardot dresses, bikinis, rooftop bars and villa parties that last long into the wee hours. The days are longer, the shorts are shorter and unadulterated fun seems to wait around every corner.
I feel intensely playful in summer. More than anything, it’s a reminder of the adventures I crave. The pressure of the heatwave just begs to be broken; the hum of a lazy August afternoon aches to be filled. An entire season of Friday feelings, the world becomes a confectionary of color: frosé-pink sunsets, gem-blue infinity pools, contrasting tan lines in coffee and cream.
That said, I’m excited for fall to get into full swing. I have so many plans - hot cider and Moscow mules, flannel shirts and football season, mountain hikes on fresh mornings and chilly evenings spent wrapped up with someone special. But there’s more to fall than pumpkin spice and sweater weather. After the fast-times and scorching nights of summer, fall is all about turning over a new leaf (and kicking through crisp, orange piles of them too) and I’m so excited to see what these next months have in store!
Since I travel like it's my job (Ha! See what I did there?!) I decided to start a blog series where I can discuss, reminisce and inspire visits to some of my favorite places. And while I may have made the city that never sleeps my home, but there’s something special about Las Vegas that keeps me coming back as well. My favorite thing about Vegas is it can be whatever experience you want it to be – it’ll give back whatever you put into, and more. Sure, you can do the whole strolling the strip with a novelty guitar glass in hand followed by a dayclub/nightclub thing. This experience has its place! But I’ve been going to Vegas since I was 15, so my Hangover re-enactment days are pretty much behind me. Nowadays, I prefer exploring the finer- and sometimes divier - side of this unique, neon-lit oasis.
Where to Stay
There are endless places to use as a base camp for Vegas adventures. A few of my classic favorites include: The Cosmopolitan, specifically the wraparound terrace suite; Aria, which also has the best poker room in Vegas (in my opinion!), Wynn (RIP Ferrari dealership in the basement) and Encore.
Where to Eat
There’s so much great food in Vegas now! For those of us who can’t get into Rao’s in NYC (not that I have quit trying!) the Vegas branch is delicious and super festive, with Christmas decorations up year-round! Joel Robuchon at the MGM Grand should not be missed for the finest of fine dining, but for incredible and fresh Mexican and a margarita that gets me tipsy after just one glass, Javier’s at Aria is exquisite.
Although I’m not eating a lot of meat these days, I always make an exception for Cut at the Palazzo. And although Vegas is a 24-hour town and you can get something to eat at any given moment, the best all-night diner is the Peppermill. If the place’s neon aesthetic looks familiar, that’s because it’s been used as a location for so many classic movies, including my all-time favorite, Casino.
What to Do
Vegas is, of course, a gambling town. I love three-card poker as much as the next girl, but there’s so much more than table games to keep you entertained. For a start, they have some world class spas. My favorite is Sahra Spa & Hammam at The Cosmopolitan. The facilities are lined with sandstone from a nearby quarry, so it feels like you’re in Red Rock Canyon while you soak away an afternoon in the hot tub. Now, doesn’t that sound heavenly?
Racing supercars may not be the first thing that springs to mind when you think of Las Vegas, but just about 20-30 minutes from the strip you will find Exotics Racing, home to a fleet of exotic cars that make this gear head’s heart sing. As I now live in NYC, I really miss driving - especially driving fast! Putting pedal to the metal is one of my favorite pastimes. This spot has everything from R8s and 911 GT3s to Huracans and 458 Italias, so whether you’re into German, Italian or British supercars, it’s the most fun way to get your heart pumping with your clothes on.
Las Vegas has more than earned its reputation as an entertainment capital. The shows are a huge part of that. A favorite of mine is Le Reve at the Wynn, an acrobatic, dreamy, underwater fantasy experience, the likes of which I’ve never witnessed before. Something about watching incredibly attractive people do equally incredible things with their beautiful bodies…it’s a sure-fire way to get a little hot under the collar.
Also – a last note on shopping! It may seem redundant to shop in Vegas, since they have all the same high-end designer stores we have over in NYC - my personal favorites being Saint Laurent, Gucci, Tom Ford and Hermes. It could be easy to overlook the shopping but that would be a mistake, as Vegas stores often have exclusive treasures and trinkets made specifically for that location. What could make a special trip even more memorable than coming home with a one-of-a-kind piece from this one-of-a-kind city?!
Since my last Q & A blog was such a hit I decided to do a follow up! I have always enjoyed reading the Proust Questionnaire in the back pages of Vanity Fair and found it so revealing, so despite not being much of a Proust-reader, I decided to take the plunge. I hope you have fun reading!
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Bouncing between Aspen and Kauai with plenty of outdoor sporting.
What is your greatest fear?
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
I can be a little blunt sometimes!
What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Which living person do you most admire?
What is your greatest extravagance?
My skincare regime.
What is your current state of mind?
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
On what occasion do you lie?
When someone asks my government name.
Which living person do you most despise?
What is the quality you most like in a man?
What is the quality you most like in a woman?
The ability to be soft and strong at once.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
Animals, books and the Lamborghini Miura.
When and where were you happiest?
On a private beach in Hawaii, post-orgasm.
Which talent would you most like to have?
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
Drink less coffee.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Making my NYC dream life come true.
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
One of my dogs.
Where would you most like to live?
Between Los Angeles, New York, Aspen, Hawaii, Las Vegas and Mexico.
What is your most treasured possession?
An original piece gifted to me by the artist.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Being surrounded by people who don’t understand you.
What is your favorite occupation?
Mine, duh 😜
What is your most marked characteristic?
My laugh, I think?
What do you most value in your friends?
Who are your favorite writers?
Jane Mayer, John Krakauer, David Sedaris, Richard Hofstadter.
Who is your hero of fiction?
Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Who are your heroes in real life?
Nina Hartley and Dolly Parton.
What are your favorite names?
Timon and Pumba.
What is it that you most dislike?
What is your greatest regret?
That I will never be an Olympic gymnast.
What is your favorite journey?
Into the desert.
What is your motto?
Stay in touch with your wild side.
73 & Me
I was heartbroken to find that my old blogs never made it across platforms as I continue my pilgrimage across the internet to friendly pastures (which is increasingly hard to come by if you these days!). I was inspired by Vogue Magazine's 73 Questions in an effort to tell you more about me or even inspire any date ideas!